HAVANA, Oct. 24, 2012- Cuba announced a decree to allow farmers to lease more state-owned fallow land, according to Prensa Latina, the official state news agency of Cuba.

Starting from December, the decree allows farmers to lease up to 67.10 hectares of state-owned fallow land, up from the maximum of 40.26 hectares established by the law in 2008. 

The news agency cited the Communist Party of Cuba’s official newspaper Granma, which reported the agricultural lands decree will come into effect on Dec. 21.

The length of the leases remains 10 years for individuals and 25 years for cooperatives. In the case of disability or death, a farmer's properties will be transferred to his or her family.  

According to Prensa Latina, the changes are based on the application of Decree-Law 259 and statements sourcing from community discussions of the draft program from the Communist Party of Cuba. Decree-Law 300 led to the repeal of the 2008 Decree-Law 259 in order to open the opportunity to extend land area to 67.10 hectares. 

The modified rule is one of the latest announcements from Cuban President Raul Castro, including a decree to ease travel restrictions out of the island, which still requires strict government approval for passports. 

Correction made: 10/25/2012


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